Belly Dancing, “I Think I Can”


My Belly Dancing Class. Don’t look for me dancing, I’m taking the picture.

“Instead of saying you’ll never be able to do it,” Jon said to me, “why don’t you say, I can do this.”

Yeah, I read “The Little Train who Could” but only later in life. “I think I can, I think I can“,  wasn’t part of my early neural system.  My little engine hummed  “Who do you think you are anyway? You can’t do that.”

So I go to Belly Dancing Class every week for the past six months and I think to myself,  I’m not a dancer, I can’t even clap to a beat, I’ll never be able to do this, but it’s kinda fun.

No pressure, no expectations.

On those few occasions when Julz tells me I’m doing something well or even just better than before, I think hmm, what do ya know?  As if I had nothing to do with it.

And yet, slowly, I’m seeing that there are some things I’m learning.  I first noticed it when, after a couple of months,  I found I knew enough to have questions.

And with some practice, I discovered that I actually was able to count out a beat and eventually even step to it, even using the right foot!

Now, I can even imagine being able to Zill someday. (Zills are the small cymbals you wear on your fingers and play while dancing)   I’m beginning to believe  it does become automatic, just as Kathleen told me.  (My fingers do two different things when I typing, so why can’t they do two different things when I’m Zilling?)

“Once you get it into your brain and body memory”, both Julz and Kathleen repeat again and again, “you won’t have to think about it anymore and you’ll just do it”.

So now I’m seeing I’m leaning something new each class.

Yesterday I realize that I’m very tight.

I always think of my body as being limber, but that’s different from being loose.  Your body has to be soft and loose to belly dance.

I’m moving my body In ways I never even imagined and discovering muscles I never knew existed.

I still often thing “I can’t do this”  But I’m trying to change that brain memory.   If I can learn to Zill I can learn to change “I can’t do this” to “I think I can.”

Now mark you Calendars:

On May 19th at 7pm  at the at the Mason Lodge in Bennington Vermont, Belly Dancers from all over the region will gather and dance to benefit  Meals on Wheels.  It’s only $10 and there’s food and raffles tool.

This happens every year and it’s the event that got me interested in Belly Dancing.  This year I’m going to  help design the stage set.  I’ve never designed a stage set before, but I think I can do it.

Here’s a promotion video from last years benefit…

7 thoughts on “Belly Dancing, “I Think I Can”

  1. Oh,Maria! This is FUNNY! and WISE! If I didn’t live several hundred miles from Bennington, VT, I’D SURE BE THERE TO SEE YOU DANCE!! You look so beautiful, so sensual, in this photo. I can almost see you moving. Annie

  2. OOPS! I SHOULD HAVE READ MORE CAREFULLY! I thought you were the slim, dark haired woman in the majestic purple outfit! Bet you look that good, tho. Annie

    1. Ah that’s Emily in the purple. but a nice compliment to me. She just became a member of the Sister’s of the Shawl. I am certain I would look nothing like her when I was dancing.

  3. I am so glad you stuck with it. Yes, you have come a long way since you started. I loved belly dancing. I know I would not be able to get on the floor anymore, but would love to dance again. Maybe after my knee replacement next month! The costumes are lovely. Does everyone make their own? Yes you can and yes you did! Just keep on dancing! So proud of you, Maria!


    1. I know a dancer who had a hip replacement and she’s still dancing. So you can too Trella. Everyone puts together their own outfits, some are home made, most not. But they are very generous with their outfits and are constantly giving them away to us new people.

  4. Oh my gosh, I just found your blog, wait for it, through a link on a germanshepherd forum taking me to to bedlam farms blog & here.
    Belly Dancing! Love, love, love. I did for years, even taught. If you’ve been at it 6 months you’re dancing, you’ve got it, it looks like a great class. Vicariously happy for you. (my dog is stealing all of my time)

    1. So nice to have you here! Thanks for your words of encouragement, the class is really great as are the people. Have fun with your dog.

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